Summer Sale! Get unlimited digital access for 13 weeks for $13.
Readers Respond
News Opinion Readers Respond

County should adopt background checks [Letter]

I read with great concern the article regarding background checks for those involved in Baltimore County recreational programs ("Balto. Co. eyes rec aide checks," April 22). How much does County Executive Kevin Kamenetz and some of the county council think is too much to pay to lessen the chance of a child being raped or sexually molested — $250,000, $500,000, $1 million? Yes, no system of checks is 100 percent reliable, but reducing any risk is worth the expense. What if it is your son or daughter who is raped or sexually molested by a coach or recreation volunteer or staff? I dare to say you would be lining up with a lawyer in court to hold the county accountable. I know I would.

Has Mr. Kamenetz or any of the council members had to deal with a child or adolescent being raped? I served over 12 years as a child protective investigator, case manager of foster children and mental health therapist treating foster children and adolescents. I investigated the rape of 9-year-old Suzy (that's a pseudonym). I also investigated many other abuses of sexual molestation and rape. Suzy was raped by a foster dad while the foster parents waited for national fingerprint background checks. He was granted provisional license (which was illegal) and Suzy was under care of this "provisional license." It was not until two years after the rape that it was discovered he had previously raped and molested a girl in another state and served prison time. Subsequently, the foster parent was convicted on felony rape charges.

Tragically this experience severely injured Suzy's mental health. She has been in and out of mental health facilities and was awarded $500,000 in a federal lawsuit. Neither the mental health treatment or the award from the lawsuit could fix the damage that Suzy has suffered. I plead with the Baltimore County Council to without delay pass a strong and effective child protection law that requires all those exposed to activities with children and adolescents be subject to fingerprint background checks on the local, state and national level.

Jonathan Reidy, Towson

-
To respond to this letter, send an email to talkback@baltimoresun.com. Please include your name and contact information.

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
  • Animal shelter lawsuit far from 'frivolous'

    Animal shelter lawsuit far from 'frivolous'

    I am shaking my head in disgust, not because of the lawsuit regarding the conditions at the Baltimore County animal shelter (having seen first hand the deplorable conditions in county animal shelters), but because of the callous, ignorant statements made by Don Mohler ("Residents sue Baltimore...

  • Kamenetz's opportunity to help Baltimore — and the county

    Kamenetz's opportunity to help Baltimore — and the county

    The new report this week from the regional Opportunity Collaborative didn't unearth much that anyone who has lived in Baltimore for long didn't already know. The area has tremendous resources in higher education, health care and high-tech industries but also deeply concentrated poverty. The opportunities...

  • Building a sustainable workforce

    Building a sustainable workforce

    The release of the Opportunity Collaborative report highlights the hard work ahead to ensure that adults of all skill levels can find jobs that pay a family supporting wage ("Leaders call for regional approach to disparities," June 8).

  • Baltimore County workers took my car

    Baltimore County workers took my car

    As a Baltimore County taxpayer for more than 30 years, I was understandably shocked to learn when I went to drive my car that it had been removed by Baltimore County employee construction workers. After spending a half-day from work without transportation, calling the police, waiting for their...

  • Balto. Co. is doing fine

    Balto. Co. is doing fine

    In your editorial, "The McDonald's Trap" (April 19), you pose the question, "Is Baltimore County providing residents the services they desire and doing it well?" As a Baltimore County resident, my answer is a resounding "yes."

  • Are Balto. Co. residents lovin' it?

    Are Balto. Co. residents lovin' it?

    By most measures, McDonald's has been a fantastically successful company, particularly at providing inexpensive burgers and French fries quickly to its patrons. In 1955, the U.S. fast-food chain sold hamburgers for 15 cents each. Today, a cheeseburger costs $1 which is, relative to inflation, 31...

  • Kamenetz's sleight of hand tax increases

    Kamenetz's sleight of hand tax increases

    Why does Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz continue to claim that he has not raised taxes since being elected ("Repeal of 'rain tax' requirement yet to trickle down to most area homeowners," April 19).

  • Don't blow it, Mr. Kamenetz

    Don't blow it, Mr. Kamenetz

    My father once told me that "if you can't save your employer a dollar, then you're not worth your paycheck." It's an old-fashioned idea, laughable these days, considering the amount of money that's squandered on unproductive programs and consequently, unproductive employees.

Comments
Loading
79°